Our local representative will meet you on arrival in Khartoum and take you to your hotel to relax after your journey.
Overnight: Grand Holiday Villa
After breakfast, enjoy a few hours in the capital with your guide. Visit the Archaeological Museum, the museum at Khalifa's House - which provides an insight into Mahdiya rule - and the Tomb of the Mahdi. Then, drive five hours north across the Western Desert to the banks of the Nile, stopping en route for a picnic lunch. At the town of Marawee, cross the bridge to Karima, where you will arrive at Nubian Rest-house at the foot of the holy Jebel Barkal mountain.
Overnight: Nubian Rest-house
Considered holy by the Nubians and the centre of religious life for over a thousand years, Jebel Barkal is a red sandstone mountain that rises from the desert. At its base there is a large temple dedicated to the Pharaohs of the New Reign and their patron, Amon. You can also see the remains of large granite sculptures of rams said to have protected the route to the Nile. After lunch, explore the necropolis at El Kurru. The royal cemetery was used by the Nubians between 800 and 400 BC and features beautifully adorned burial tombs.
Overnight: The Nubian Rest-house
Cross the Nile this morning to reach Nuri, used as a burial site for the kingdom of Nepata. The ancient ruins here are dominated by the pyramid of Pharaoh Taharqa, the eldest and largest of the pyramids. After your visit, travel into the Bayuda Desert between the Nile's 4th and 6th Cataract. The landscape is characterised by sharp black basalt mountains and barren valleys inhabited by the Bisharin nomads and their herds of camels and donkeys. Enjoy a picnic lunch before you continue to the town of Atbara, at the confluence of the Nile and Atbara Rivers. Cross the Nile and, if you wish, make a stop at the small railway museum before continuing south through a sea of acacia trees to the pyramids at Meroe. Your accommodation for the night is a comfortable desert camp overlooking the pyramids, a recognised World Heritage Site.
Overnight: The Meroe Camp
Today spend more time at the pyramids with your guide who will unravel the stories of Meroe and the complexities of the Nubian culture. Visit the funerary chapels which are decorated with colourful bas-reliefs depicting the life of the king and offerings to god. After lunch at camp, move along the Nile to see the ruins of the Royal City, which covers a large area of small hills covered in red clay fragments, much of which is still to be excavated.
Overnight: The Meroe Camp
Spend the morning visiting two of Sudan's most important archaeological sites, Naga and Mussawarat. Naga is one of the two centres that developed during the Meroitic Period and its ruins date back to the 1st Century AD. Explore the temple of Apedemak, with its symbolic bas-reliefs, and the 'kiosk' which displays an intriguing fusion of Egyptian, Roman and Greek styles. Also nearby is the temple dedicated to Amon, with many statues of rams and intricately carved gates. Next travel to Mussawarat, where the ruins of a very big temple dating back to the 1st Century and adorned with elephants lie in a beautiful valley. Enjoy your picnic in the area before making to journey back to Khartoum for your flight home.
Overnight: Grand Holiday Villaum
You will be driven to the airport today for your onward flight.